Warning: Emotional stress increases breast cancer risk
(NaturalHealth365) The diagnosis of breast cancer is inevitably a very emotional event. As your mind races a hundred miles an hour, dozens of questions come to the surface. You wonder about your course of treatment, what the outcome will be and how you and your family will make it through it all.
I deal with these issues all the time, and I can tell you that emotional stress does inhibit immune function and increases your risk of cancer. In fact, Essential # 4 of “The 7 Essentials System™” for healing the body naturally is about healing your emotional wounds as you work towards healing your body. But just what do the emotions have to do with breast cancer?
Even the American Cancer Society admits there is an emotional connection to disease
Inquiry into the mind-body connection within the scientific community goes back further than you may think. Dr. Predergast, an eminent oncologist that was president of the American Cancer Society, said in 1959:
“There is some evidence that the course of disease, in general, is affected by emotional stress. It is my sincere hope that we can widen the quest to include the distinct possibility that within one’s mind is a power capable of exerting forces which can either enhance or inhibit the progress of this disease.”
Dr. O. Carl Simonton was often called the “father of mind-body medicine for cancer patients” and is best known for his pioneering research in the field of psychosocial oncology beginning in the 1970s. He developed a model of emotional support for the treatment of cancer that introduced the concept that a patient’s state of mind could influence their ability to survive the dis-ease. His emotional intervention program was even approved by the Surgeon General’s Office.
While he was in practice, Dr. Simonton applied this emotional support program to his patients and saw improvements in survival time and quality of life. He believed that “emotions are a strong driving force in the immune system and other healing systems.”
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Understanding how chronic negative emotions can trigger cancer cell growth
Research abounds that centers on the connection between the mind and health. The following are four common emotional patterns specifically found in people who have cancer. The list is based on the work of Douglas Brodie, MD:
1) A significant loss, such as divorce or the death of a loved one, between 6 and 18 months prior to diagnosis
2) Poor self-image
3) A strong tendency to hold on to resentment
4) A poor ability to develop and maintain long-term, meaningful relationships
Emotional healing can help you heal from a cancer diagnosis.
How does one go about healing lifelong emotional patterns? There are two must-haves as you start your emotional and physical healing journey:
1) The first must-have is the DESIRE for change. No change is possible without the intention to improve not only your physical life but your emotional and spiritual health as well.
2) You must also have FAITH. For many individuals, this also includes faith in a higher power. Whatever your beliefs, however, faith in yourself and the belief that you have what it takes to turn your health around is vital.
In addition, you must also possess a strong belief in the course of treatment you have chosen.
This is important: Get the support you need for emotional health
Part of the emotional healing process is distinguishing what mind-body support you may need and then taking action to get that support. The practice of meditation is fundamental for whatever path you take.
A study by Harvard researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital showed that meditation could actually rebuild grey matter in as little as eight weeks. The results were based on 30-minutes of meditation a day.
One meditation tool I personally used after my own breast cancer diagnosis (and still do today) is called the Silva Method. Founder Jose’ Silva believed that 90% of illnesses originate in the mind and therefore can, to some extent, be reversed by the mind. After working with tens of thousands of students, Silva identified three essential requirements for effective mind-body healing:
1) Functioning at the Alpha and Theta levels:
Going to the Alpha and Theta levels has the same basic effect as meditating. When someone meditates, scientifically they are reducing their brain wave frequency to Alpha or Theta. Jose’ Silva found that people who can remain at these levels are able to put themselves in a state where cells repair, stress dissipates, the immune system strengthens, and physical symptoms of illness are in some cases reduced.
2) Harnessing the power of healing imagery:
Healing Imagery (or Visualization) involves visualizing the end result of your goal or desire while you are in the Alpha or Theta state. Visualizing the tumor shrinking and eventually disappearing is a powerful exercise!
3) Mastering the D-B-E thought process:
The ability to “Desire, Believe and Expect” that healing will occur is the first step in making it a reality. When you commit to healing your whole body – physically, emotionally, and spiritually – and begin to act on that commitment, you will inevitably “see” real-time positive outcomes in your life.
Why not give a mind-body tool like meditation a try – and “see” for yourself!
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